Svensson wants to make derby debut

SWEDISH striker Matthias Svensson will take it in his stride if he is handed his Norwich City debut in tomorrow's East Anglain derby clash at Portman Road.

SWEDISH striker Matthias Svensson will take it in his stride if he is handed his Norwich City debut in tomorrow's East Anglain derby clash at Portman Road.

The former Charlton front-man joined the Canaries for an undisclosed fee yesterday after spending a couple of days thinking over the move and will go straight into the squad for the eagerly awaited encounter.

There's a chance he could be leading the line with another new recruit in the shape of his former Crystal Palace team-mate Leon McKenzie, who arrived at Carrow Road on Monday. But the big striker is unfazed about the prospect of making his bow in such a white-hot atmosphere – and is hoping for a chance to make life distinctly uncomfortable for Ipswich Town's central defenders.

"I'm delighted to be coming here – once I knew Norwich were interested it wasn't a difficult choice," said the 29-year-old Swedish international after signing a two-and-a-half year contract.


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"If I play against Ipswich it would be great but it's just another game, nothing special. No, I take that back, it is special – but it will be great just to put the shirt on and go out and perform as well as I can.

"Obviously I am a target man who likes to hold the ball up and win headers – but I'm also an aggressive player and I would say that is another asset. I like to cause problems for defenders and if I get a chance to play against Ipswich that's what I will be trying to do."

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Svensson has now recovered from the ankle injury that ruled him out of a clash with City earlier this season while on loan at Derby and is looking forward to giving his all for the Canaries.

Norwich will be Svensson's fifth English club if you count the loan spell at Derby. He joined Portsmouth in 1996, just after winning the Swedish First Division title with Elfsborg, and went on to Crystal Palace and Charlton.

Norwich manager Nigel Worthington is delighted to have acquired the services of a new target-man and feels he will have no problem settling down at Carrow Road.

"English football and Swedish football is very similar," he said. "It's rough and ready and all-action. That is why so many Swedes come across here and do well.

"I'm delighted that Matthias has decided to come and join us. He will be a big asset to this football club. He's hungry and ambitious and is just what we're looking for to add to what we've got.

"He upsets defenders, he's a handful to mark, he's aggressive and he can score goals."

"We tried on a number of occasions to get Matt on loan but because of injuries and Alan Curbishley not wanting to let him out it never happened."

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